Drake Casino Review
Drake Casino was established in 2012 and has a lot of potential to be a great service, especially for players who prefer Betsoft games. It provides a 3D Slot area, plus several progressive jackpot games supplied by Arrow's Edge. There are multiple bonuses and a long list of tournaments, and US players are accepted. The site has a lot to offer, but there are also some significant red flags that showed up when we looked through the terms and conditions.
If this weren't an average score that incorporated the gaming itself, it would be much lower, as there are some major problems with banking, bonuses, and registration with this casino. We so want to be able to give it a high score based on its casino alone, but the other factors are just too important to ignore.
Slots, progressives, table games, video poker, video poker progressives, and a few specialty games are decent variety for a smaller casino. Gaming that's hard to find anywhere else is provided, and most of the slots can be found on mobile devices as well. Specialty games could use a boost with bingo and a few more scratch cards and other varieties, as it's primarily keno, and not available on smartphones or tablets.
We're still giving a star because this casino does offer a Bitcoin option that is a benefit to players, but it also charges hefty fees for withdrawals, notes that it can impose a 1% to 3% fee on credit card transactions, and has a 48-hour pending period and up to five business days for payment approvals.
As far as regular bonuses like the deposit matches go, we recommend staying far away from them, as the rollovers appear to be massive and the details are not clear. But we will say that the tournaments and cash back program do provide benefit to players. There are daily freeroll and buy-in tournaments that can be a lot of fun for players who want to stretch their money and play more often. For a small investment, you can win anywhere from a few hundred to a few thousand.
Because it has been helpful to some players, we're giving a little bit of the benefit of the doubt to Drake Casino's customer service department , but the live chat hours are limited, and our interaction resulted in us being disconnected without a response.
We do need to give high marks for the mobile casino, as it carries all of Arrow's Edge jackpot progressive games and more than 50% of the entire casino, so players are treated to quantity and variety on the go.
Overview of Drakecasino.eu
Straight out of the gate, we're going to say that we found some significant problems with the Drake Casino, and the number one issue was the lack of information that it provides. There is no link to licensing on the homepage, which is required for regulated casinos. The terms and conditions do state that it operates under the laws of Curaçao, and other review sites mention Curaçao egaming licensing, but it's not publicized.
Next, in addition to the licensing, ownership is a mystery. There is certainly no perfect business out there, and no operator is going to provide a service that pleases everyone. However, the one thing that all casinos can do is prominently post their licensing and ownership, so players know they have recourse, should anything happen to their money.
It appears that Drake has a sister site named Gossip Slots, as they both share a VIP Rewards Plan, and some other forums have mentioned a tie with Cyberluck, but Cyberluck seems to be a Curaçao license holder for many operators. We can't find any evidence that shows that it owns drakecasino.eu.
Drake Casino allows US players to register, with a few state exceptions. It also accepts registrations from the UK, which is a violation of the UK Gambling Commission laws. These laws state that remote operators who market to and allow UK players to register and place bets need to have a remote license issued by the UK Gambling Commission, and Drake Casino does not have that proper licensing in place.
The following are locations specifically called out in the terms and conditions as being restricted from using Drake's services:
- The Netherlands
- The Netherlands Antilles
- Antigua & Barbuda
- Peoples Republic of China
- North Korea
- Sierra Leone
- District of Columbia
- New Jersey
Another critical thing to note if you're in an allowable area and are considering registering is that all players need to be at least 21 years of age.
If you go to drakecasinoonline.com, you've only reached the landing page or marketing page for Drake Casino and won't have full access to the entire service.
If you opt to register an account with Drake Casino, you're looking at some hefty fees to transfer money in and out of your betting account. Although most of the deposit methods are free, there is a mention of a 1% to 3% fee assessed for credit card payments. It's not noted in the deposit area, but is in the terms and conditions. And, you may want to sit down for this one, as payouts can cost as much as $60 a pop, and you can't withdraw less than $100.
It's unfortunate that we have to state this, because the promotional program that Drake offers is outstanding at first glance. There are welcome offers, reload bonuses, cash back opportunities, and best of all in our book is a considerable list of tournaments. We say it's unfortunate because, once again, nondisclosure enters the picture, and rollover requirements are vague. Many links that should direct players to more detailed information don't work, and, from what we do know, most rollovers are 40X on the deposit and bonus combined. Yikes.
Drake is not entirely a Betsoft casino. Yes, it does include the popular 3D slots that Betsoft is known for, and players should recognize a lot of the titles. There is another player, though, as Arrow's Edge is providing the progressive jackpot games, and they're unique and have some interesting bonus rounds and some other features that you won't find elsewhere. The graphics may not be as advanced as Betsoft, but the overall playing experience should prompt you to take a peek.
Bonuses & Promotions
As we're about to detail the bonuses and promotions on Drake Casino's site, and there are many, we want to reiterate an important point. This is not an upfront website when it comes to bonus terms and conditions.
Reputable sites are meticulous about including rollover amounts and how they are applied whenever a bonus is listed. Now, we're not fond of any playthrough requirement, as it takes away from the whole "reward" aspect, but we'd rather know what we have to do to comply rather than it be a big mystery.
If you go to the bonus terms and conditions, which, by the way, aren't linked from the welcome bonus information as they should be, you'll still read some vague paragraphs.
For example, there isn't a welcome bonus section that outlines everything that's involved with the 300% offer this casino is promoting. Instead, under the general Bonus Terms and Conditions, it states:
"Wagering requirements for deposit bonus coupons can be up to 40 times the sum of the deposit plus the bonus, unless otherwise stated. Wagering requirements must be fulfilled for each and every deposit bonus used."
Did you catch the "can be up to 40 times" part? We'll assume that it is 40 times and it's applied to both the deposit and bonus, so it's a massive rollover requirement.
We did contact customer service to clarify, and we were greeted promptly, but then we were left on hold for quite awhile and we were eventually disconnected.
It's a shame that there isn't more disclosure from this casino, as it has done a great job of incorporating deposit bonuses with other types of offers, including a long list of tournaments. Under other circumstances, we'd be rating their promotions very high, as they're creative, plentiful, and diverse.
300% on the first three deposits up to $6,000
This is a simple deposit match that's divided into three parts with a maximum $2,000 offered per deposit. As it is a deposit-related bonus, we'll go out on a limb and say that the 40 times rollover applies. So, if you deposit $666 to receive $1998, you need to wager $106,560 to comply with a 40 times wagering requirement.
75% Reload (no details provided); deposit bonuses do have a 40x rollover on deposit plus bonus combined
Free Spins (no details provided); Free Spins come with a 40 times rollover and a maximum $100 withdrawal that must be made via Wire with a $60 fee attached to it. (Read that again - your net is $40)
100% Reload (no details provided); deposit bonuses do have a 40x rollover on deposit plus bonus combined
Deposit $50 to receive 100 free spins; 40 times rollover; maximum $100 withdrawal; $60 fee will be assessed for the bank wire payout
Ta Da! No rollover. This is a 10% cash back offer on any losses you've accumulated in a week's time and is credited on Tuesdays.
The Red Diamond refers to the first level of the loyalty club. It's the lowest level, and all new players are automatically enrolled in it. Even though there are other reload opportunities, Red Diamond members can receive a 100% reload deposit match up to $500 every time they transfer money to their player's account.
Every month, a new game will be designated, and players that give it a spin will receive double rewards points for as long as they continue to play.
Free Rolls, Buy-ins, Slots, Table Games - Drake Casino does offer an impressive list of tournaments. It gives players a shot at big money with just a small (or no) investment.
For example, there's currently a Franken Slot Monster Tournament with just a $5.00 entry fee and a $5,000 prize up for grabs. There's also a daily freeroll that's currently on "License to Spin, " and the winner will receive $100. Regular $5.00 buy-ins provide $250 prizes, and table game players aren't left out either.
The VIP Blackjack tournament does have a $25 entry, but the prize is $3,000. The same goes for a five hand Joker Poker contest.
The complete list of tournaments is available from the main menu of the website.
This is Drake's loyalty VIP club that we just mentioned in conjunction with the Red Diamond promotion. Members at the Red Diamond level receive 135 points for every $100 wagered on slot games.
There are six more levels to achieve corresponding rewards like bigger bonuses and faster earnings. Platinum is the premier level, and players accumulate 190 points for every $100.
Members receive other perks and redeem their points for prizes like electronics.
There's another rewards club that players can join, and it's in conjunction with Gossip Slots. It's located at viprewardsplan.eu or through the link on drakecasino.eu and offers other incentives such as casino bonuses, sweepstakes, and merchandise.
It doesn't matter if you're a member of Drake Casino or another one, you always need to be cautious about accepting any bonus until you read the terms and conditions thoroughly. We've already made mention of the vague rollover descriptions, but you also need to be careful about playing baccarat, craps or European roulette, because if you've accepted any offer, playing those games will void your bonus and winnings.
There are also several specific notations about what games will contribute to the wagering requirement. For example, blackjack provides at 10%, video poker is also 10%, and Caribbean stud is 35%. There's a whole list of games and the rates that accompany them.
The bottom line is that reading through everything first could save you from losing out in the end.
The list isn't long, especially compared to more European catering sites, but it does include a good range of options, including e-wallets and Bitcoin.
We're going to go through and detail everything for you, though, as the list on Drake's site is a bit misleading. In the deposit section, it lists most methods as free, but when you read through the terms and conditions, you'll find a posting stating that players may be charged anywhere from 1% to 3% for credit card transactions.
As credit cards aren't included in the withdrawal selections, we can only assume that credit card deposits are subject to a fee.
Additionally, don't leave a player account balance inactive for six months on this site, as your balance will start going down by $10 each month for an "administrative fee."
Minimum Deposit: $25
Maximum Deposit: Depends on Player Status
Fee: Possible 1% - 3% Charge for Credit Cards
Minimum Deposit: $25
Maximum Deposit: Depends on Player Status
Fee: Possible 1% - 3% Charge for Credit Cards
Minimum Deposit: $25
Maximum Deposit: Depends on Player Status
Note: Not Available to US Players
Minimum Deposit: $25
Maximum Deposit: $10,000
Minimum Deposit: $100
Maximum Deposit: $690
Fee: Free if the Deposit is $200 or more; $10 for Under $200
Minimum Deposit: $10
Maximum Deposit: $2,000
Not Available to US Players
Minimum Deposit: $30
Maximum Deposit: $2,000
Note: Not Available to US or Canadian Players
Let's move over to withdrawals. There are few things to take note of in this area, the first being that Bitcoin is the only free cash-out option. Everything else comes at a price. Secondly, there is a 48-hour pending period before payments are processed. That means that players have two days to initiate a reverse withdrawal on some or all of their requested payout.
After the 48 hours, the terms and conditions state that it could take up to five business days to review payouts.
Minimum Withdrawal: $300
Maximum Withdrawal: $2,000 (every seven days)
Turnaround Time: Usually within 20 minutes after payment has been internally processed
Fee: The first Bitcoin withdrawal within 30 days is free; after that, there is a 5% fee up to $60 imposed.
Note: A player who deposited with a credit card and is making his or her first withdrawal attempt is prohibited from using Bitcoin. Translation: You're going to pay a fee.
Minimum Withdrawal: $330
Maximum Withdrawal: $330 (every seven days)
Turnaround Time: Monday through Friday within 48 hours after internal approval
Fee: 8% with a minimum of $50 fee
Note: Credit card depositors can't use Quick Cash for their first or second withdrawal requests. They are limited to Bank Wire.
Minimum Withdrawal: $100
Maximum Withdrawal: $2,500 (every seven days)
Turnaround Time: Up to 12 Business days
Fee: $60 for Qualified Players Only
Quick quiz: What do you notice about the withdrawal limits?
Answer: You need to cash out a minimum of $100.
Slots, table games, specialty games, and video poker are the four sections of this casino. Slots break down into different types and feature some linked jackpot progressive versions that most casinos don't have, as they're courtesy of Arrow's Edge.
The casino features: Games can be sorted by features, lines, or alphabetically, and slots are broken down into 5 Reel 3D video versions and different types of progressives. Most of the casino transfers to mobile devices.
121 games is pretty impressive, as there are only around 200 in the full casino version. All of the Arrow's Edge Jackpot Progressive slots are mobile friendly, so players can spin the reels hoping for that bigger five-figure payout anywhere they go, as long as WiFi is in the picture.
Betsoft and Arrow's Edge
Just a quick note about Arrow's Edge, as it's not a big player in the online casino world, but from the look of their games on Drake, they put forth some creative options for players. Their bonus rounds are unique and interactive, and all of the slots are linked to one progressive prize pool.
Slots are divided out into a few handy categories, including three different types of jackpot slots and a five-reel 3D slot section for players who appreciate the latest in technology. These are the more advanced games, with impressive graphics and enhancements, so we'll start out with a few of the 3D titles for you.
Some of these names may be familiar, as these are some of the most popular offerings from the Betsoft catalog. If you haven't played one of these before, they're worth checking out, as they are really impressive and about as far from the traditional bell slots as you can get, with storylines and moving characters, and the best in audio and video features.
- The Tipsy Tourist
- Rook's Revenge
- Ned and His Friends
- Good Girl Bad Girl
- It Came From Venus!
- The Slotfather (and The Slotfather II)
- The Exterminator
- Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde
- Aztecs Treasures
This section is courtesy of Arrow's Edge, and the games are all linked to one progressive jackpot that was sitting at the $47,000 mark when we checked in last.
These games combine some features of the 3D video slots with more basic graphics. They're enhanced with characters and audio and video, but you can tell the difference between the Arrow's Edge versions and Betsoft's.
- Chef Wars
- Shopping in the Hills
- 4th and Goal
- Dodge City Slots
- Top Dog
- Days of our Slots
- The Winning Dead
- Yellow Brick Reels
- Aruban Nights
Mystery Jackpot Slots offer the Super Jackpot plus a smaller one, aka The Mystery Jackpot, that's now sitting at $5,800. There are only eight games, but they're entertaining with some unique bonus game twists.
- Chocolate Slots
- Eastern Dragon
- World Leaders
- Dragon's Cave
- Yakuza Slots
- Alice in Dreamland
- Arcade Fortunes
- Ocean Life
Cash Grab slots offer three jackpot opportunities, as it incorporates a third, albeit smaller cash grab jackpot that came in around $2,300 at the time of this review.
- Board Babe
In this section, the games are provided by both Arrow's Edge and Betsoft. Arrow's Edge, once again, incorporates a progressive payout with its games. The titles can be efficiently sorted by selecting Cash Grab Video Poker.
- 5 Hand All American
- 5 Hand Deuces Wild
- Deuces and Joker Poker
- Double Bonus
- Five Draw
- Jacks or Better
- Double Jackpot Poker
- Tri Card Poker
- 10s or Better
- Split Way Royal
The graphics led us to believe that the table games would be outdated, but once we pulled up a game, it was well-designed. There is plenty of variety in this section, but unfortunately, less than half are available on mobile devices.
- Blackjack Perfect Pairs
- High Draw Low
- 21 Burn
- Pai Gow Poker
- Ride'm Poker
- Three Card Rummy
- Zoom Roulette
- Super 7
- Pirate 21
You're not going to find much in this section, but Keno players will be happy. There are four keno games, one scratch off, and the virtual racebook. None of these options showed up for us on our Android device.
- Instant Keno
- Klub Keno
- Krazy Keno
- Traditional Keno
- Virtual Racebook 3D
- Contact Email: [email protected]
- Contact Email - New Players: [email protected]
- Contact Phone: +1 800-613-8090
- International Phone: +599 (9) 733-1206
- Live Chat: available 10 am to 12 am EST
We just want to mention a few things regarding customer service.
The first is that you may have noticed that there are hours associated with live chat, so even though this is a 24-hour casino, you need to email for assistance between midnight and 10 am.
Secondly, we did access the live chat to submit a question about the welcome bonus. We were answered promptly, but then the agent disappeared and we were eventually disconnected. As we did provide an email address when our chat started, we checked after about 20 minutes to see if there was any follow-up, and didn't see anything from Drake Casino.
It is such a shame that we have to list some major issues with Drake Casino, because we want to like it so much. The tournaments and the Arrow's Edge gaming could contribute to a superior service, but that's just not the case here.
First and foremost, the display of proper licensing is a must. It's the only back-up that players have if they run into a problem with a casino or other gambling site. Yes, we're assuming that it's licensed in Curaçao, but that's not explicitly listed anywhere that we could easily locate. On top of that, the ownership is apparently top secret, because it's not listed either.
If you go to some other well-reviewed and established sites, ownership and licensing is front and center.
While there's non-disclosure of company information, there's also some missing bonus information. If you know anything about online gambling, you know that bonuses there are nothing like with land-based casinos. They come with wagering requirements that are difficult to understand, even when they're provided. But, when they're only partially stated, you've really got a problem.
This site promotes a whopping $6,000 welcome bonus package that results from three 300% deposit matches. It talks about how beneficial it is for players to be able to divide up their deposits and still receive rewards. What it doesn't state is precisely what needs to be done to comply with the offer.
In a very roundabout way, we ended up on the bonus terms and conditions page, as it wasn't linked from the welcome bonus description. Even though there was quite a bit of information provided, the welcome package wasn't specifically called out. We're inferring that a 40 times rollover applies to the deposit and bonus amount, but the site mentions a deposit bonus based on a coupon and says it could be "up to 40 times..." so there's really no clarity there whatsoever.
Another bonus issue revolves around free spins or no deposit offers, and is a prime example of why customers should always read the fine print.
But we're not even at the good part yet. That maximum cash-out amount has to be made via a wire that requires a $60 fee.
We have read some comments about nonresponse from customer service, and although our live chat was answered within a minute or so, we were abandoned after the greeting with no reply to our question about the welcome bonus stipulations. We waited for a while and then were disconnected from the chat, which seems to be similar to what some other players have experienced.
We've just made mention of that $60 fee for wire transfers, and that's not the only issue with payouts. First off, there's a 48-hour pending period that allows players to change their mind and initiate a reverse withdrawal. Then, the approvals can take up to five days, but you may not even mind the wait if it didn't cost you so much.
If you want a second Bitcoin payment, it'll cost you 5%.
So, we're looking at a site with unknown ownership and iffy licensing, as well as bonus programs that are unclear and don't provide many benefits, and a financial system that requires a $100 withdrawal minimum and charges hefty transfer fees.
It really is disheartening, because the casino provides a good service. The gaming has Betsoft standards combined with really unique games from Arrow's Edge that give slot players with something new. They're not easy to find, and they offer jackpots on both slot games and video poker, so there's benefit for punters if you have tunnel-vision and look at the gameplay only.
As much as we like the unique mix of gaming in the casino and appreciate that most of them are also available for mobile play, we just can't recommend this casino. With the banking fees, the non-disclosure of essential information, and a very problematic bonus system, it would be an expensive and risky endeavor for new players to give it a try.